Tuesday, 25 December 2012

My First Library Card

I started using my local library at four years old and before I had my own card. In the beginning, I signed books out on my mother's card. By the age of eight I had my very own card and since then I have always had a library card or access to a library of some description.

I say a 'library of some description' and not 'access of some description' due to a brief sojourn in Ukraine where I only had access to a closed-stack university library. As a person who derives immense pleasure from the unexpected discoveries reaped from an hour's stroll between the stacks, it is very disconcerting to be physically separated from the books and have to submit a title request to a library assistant in a white coat then return hours later to collect said item which may, or may not, be suitable. Although, the white coat bestowed a unusual measure of gravity to the act of borrowing a book.

My first library card was a plain yellow card with my signature on the back and the county shield on the front (a swan with a crown and chain around its neck). The card looked the same as an adult borrower's card, and in comparison to today's creations festooned with child-friendly images, it was wholly utilitarian.

English counties trivia quiz.
 Do you  know  which county has this image as its shield?

I can't remember how I felt about my first card - library membership and regular visits were just a normal part of life for children BHC (before home computers). I am certain, however, that I did not beg my mother for my first card like this CUTIE did in Denver, Colorado.

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